Often stress gets blamed for lowering milk supply and causing baby to wean earlier than intended. It has been shown that it isn’t actually the stress that does it, but the situation the parent and baby find themselves in.
Holiday season, family gatherings, or family emergencies are all times where accidental weaning can easily happen.
- Eager relatives who want to hold and feed the baby
- Pressure to entertain friends and family
- Travelling to visit relatives can all interfere with the breastfeeding relationship.
A little planning ahead can keep things on track for you and your baby!
If you need to drive for a while:
- To get to your destination plan on frequent stops for breastfeeding breaks.
- New babies should also get a break from their carseats often to make sure they are breathing comfortably.
- Stopping every hour or so to stretch your legs, get baby out of the carseat and breastfeed is a great way to make sure your breastfeeding stays on track.
Large family gatherings may be the first time you have had to establish boundaries about your parenting with your extended family.
Rehearsing some phrases to use with nosy relatives can help.
- “Breastfeeding is working for us”
- “Breastfeeding is normal. Baby doesn’t need a bottle”
- “Our doctor says breastfeeding is the healthiest thing for baby right now”
- “Baby is too young for solid food”
Here are a few tips you can use to help along the way:
- Baby sling or a wrap can keep baby close to you and make sure you notice all the feeding cues.
- Don’t be shy about asking for baby back from relatives who are cuddling your baby.
- Watch your baby for signs of stress from being passed around to relatives. You aren’t spoiling your baby by insisting on getting baby back in your arms to comfort them and breastfeed.
Breastfeeding in front of family can be challenging for some people.
- Practicing in front of a mirror can give you the confidence to breastfeed in public.
- Planning ahead with comfortable clothing that is breastfeeding friendly.